‘Return from spender’: Businesses need to prepare for refunds after Black Friday

57% of retailers say ‘serial returners’ have an ultimately negative impact on their business, with shops left with stock they can’t re-sell

UK retail businesses are being warned to prepare for ‘serial returners’ with Black Friday and Cyber Monday fast approaching.

According to a report by Barclaycard, 30% of UK shoppers describe themselves as a ‘serial returner’ – someone who deliberately over-buys and then returns unwanted items – and 19% of shoppers revealed ordering multiple versions of the same item online.

57% of retailers said this increase in returns had an ultimately negative impact on their business, as it leaves them with stock that they often can’t sell.

Despite this, 89% of retailers acknowledged a good returns policy as being important to their customers – 57% of retailers said they gave refunds to customers regardless of a returning’s product condition in order to maintain a positive relationship with their customers.

It has been suggested that Black Friday and Cyber Monday will see an increase of ‘serial returner’ activity as consumers are likely to be tempted to overspend due to slashed prices.

Sharon Manikon, director of customer solutions at Barclaycard, said:

“More than any other time of the year, retailers need to be prepared for high volumes of both purchases and returns during Black Friday. While seasonal discounts provide an opportunity to entice customers with reductions and offers, as our research shows, the draw of a bargain is likely to encourage shoppers to impulse-buy in bulk and later return the items they decide not to keep.

“To capitalise on Black Friday and stand out from the competition, retailers need to not only focus on drawing consumers in with seasonal bargains, but also ensure that they have a clear and flexible returns policy. Those that balance these competing demands will be able to meet customer expectations without impacting their own bottom line.”

Are you a retailer? Here’s how you can prepare for Black Friday.

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